What products do you employ to turn back the hands of time? Although the beauty-from-within trend continues to grow, a recent survey showed that most shoppers still opt for topical skin products to achieve healthy skin. Be wise beyond your years by choosing these five ingredients, which research shows help fight free radical damage and increase collagen production to keep skin healthy and vibrant.

Niacinamide (Vitamin B3)

Topical niacinamide fights acne and rosacea thanks to anti-inflammatory properties, and new research proves its antiaging prowess, too. A 2010 study in Journal of Drugs in Dermatology showed niacinamide increased dermal collagen production, resulting in noticeably firmer skin. Plus, it reversed sun damage, according to another recent study published in the same journal that showed subjects had thicker skin after 12 weeks of applying a B3 derivative daily. “Thickening of any skin layer is important because the thinning of skin is typical of aging,” says D.J. Verret, MD, of Plano, Texas. The study also showed niacinamide helped increase the sloughing rate of dead, dull cells.
Try it → Marie Veronique Organics Anti-Wrinkle Serum

Plant stem cells

Apple stem cells may be the next big antiaging breakthrough, say natural skin care experts. Plant stem cells, particularly from apples, may help maintain and repair tissue to keep skin looking young, according to research from a Swiss biochemistry lab, which showed that topically applying apple stem cells delays the aging process by triggering the skin’s ability to regenerate cells. The same lab demonstrated that apple stem cells reduce existing-wrinkle depth by up to 15 percent.
Try it → MyChelle Dermaceuticals Apple Brightening Serum and Fabulous Eye Cream, EmerginC Scientific Organics Phytocell Serum

Red Algae

Wrinkles and skin thinning aren’t the only signs of aging. Over time, sun exposure, hormonal changes, and injuries can cause skin to produce excess pigment, resulting in sunspots and discoloration, says Jason Litner, MD, of Beverly Hills. Research from France suggests that one key to avoiding age-related complexion problems may be red algae extract, rich in natural sugars that help control skin pigmentation. The purple-red seaweed has been shown to slow the skin’s melanin production, which can cause hyperpigmentation. This means a lighter, brighter, and more even skin tone, says Litner.
Try it → Osea Red Algae Mask, Bel’lo Restorative Marine Moisturizer

Resveratrol

Found in the skin of red grapes, as well as in blueberries, raspberries, peanuts, dark chocolate, and cocoa, this potent antioxidant has greater topical free radical scavenging abilities than green tea, pomegranate, and Co-Q10, according to a recent study in the Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology. When applied directly to skin, resveratrol helps diffuse free radicals, protecting against wrinkles, weathering, and discoloration. “It may just be the most powerful antidote to photoaging yet,” says Verret. It may also help skin cells increase collagen production, according to research.
Try it → Juice Beauty Organic Facial Rejuvenating Mask

Sea buckthorn oil

Rich in anti-inflammatory, free radical-fighting beta-carotene and vitamin E, plus nourishing fatty acids, the oil from the green shrub and berries native to Europe and Asia has been used to heal wounds for centuries, says Elizabeth Trattner, acupuncture physician and doctor of Traditional Chinese Medicine in Bay Harbor Islands, Florida. Recent research with women between the ages of 50 and 70 showed sea buckthorn oil also possesses antiaging properties. Applying a cream with sea buckthorn oil twice daily for three months significantly improved the subjects’ skin hydration and overall skin elasticity. And the treatment resulted in increased thickness, suggesting improved collagen synthesis.
Try it → Aubrey Organics Sea Buckthorn with Ester-C Rejuvenating Antioxidant Serum, Sibu Beauty Repair & Protect Sea Buckthorn daytime facial cream